When a new governor named Joan Ferguson (Pamela Rabe), or "The Fixer" as she is known at her previous workplaces, takes over Wentworth Prison and aims to rule with an iron hand, she decides to pull Bea out of her drug-induced stupor and reintroduce her to gen pop, especially since Franky (Nicole Da Silva) has taken over as head of the prisoners, and Ferguson would like to shake her up. Bea is even placed in Jacs' old cell to further stir Franky's pot. Since all of the women so greatly respect Bea, Franky immediately sees her as a threat, but Bea just wants to keep her head down. In fact, she finds herself solely focused on revenge against Jacs' son, Brayden (Reef Ireland), since he was the one who overdosed Debbie. Bea will work on her plot for revenge throughout the season, first acting out of raw emotion, then very slowly and smartly, involving some old friends and a few new ones as well.
Speaking of new, there are some fresh faces to the mix. First off is Sky (Kathryn Beck), a skinny little tweaker who is focused mainly on scoring drugs, but has become one of Franky's little lackies. She is dangerous because her loyalty is first and foremost to drugs, but she's a nasty little bitch and is always happy to do Franky's awful bidding. Next are Maxine (Socratis Otto) and Jess (Georgia Chara), two people who are so clearly out of their element in prison and both of whom have a tough time fitting in. Maxine is a post-op transgender woman who still looks very much like a man wearing a wig. Matthew "Fletch" Fletcher (Aaron Jeffery) takes an immediate dislike to her and most of the women make things pretty hard on her, at first. However, after she intervenes in a nasty attack on Bea, the two form an alliance, one which will serve both parties well throughout the season. Meanwhile, little Jess is a crying ball of emotions when she arrives, and although she is calmed by Will Jackson (Robbie Magasiva), she sets her sights on Fletch, something that will end up haunting him. She also has a very interesting backstory about a child who was killed while in her care and I suspect (and hope) that will come up later, because I think there's a really good story there.
As Governor Ferguson puppets everyone in the prison, Vera Bennett (Kate Atkinson) finds herself drawn into Ferguson's web, first confiding drunken secrets with her after work while having drinks, then falling victim to her extreme manipulation. Vera is also battling with her wicked mother, who is now terminally ill with cancer and making Vera's life even more miserable with her hateful tirades. However, a few turns of events end up making Vera into Ferguson's mini-me and she can be quite dangerous when she wants.
Ferguson uses sweet Doreen Anderson (Shareena Clanton) to spy on Bea and, in return, sets her up over a nice veggie garden, which has some pretty big ramifications. First off, prisoners from Walford Men's Prison come over to help revamp the shed and build the garden. Since the men enjoy being around the women, they stretch it out as long as they can. One prisoner, in particular, adorable Nash Taylor (Luke McKenzie), falls for Doreen and the feeling is mutual, but can their relationship survive, with Nash getting paroled soon? To make matters worse, sneaky Franky finds a way to use the garden to move her "gear" (drugs, various contraband items, etc.) into the prison and keep her chokehold of power, but in the end, this brings far more harm than good.
Liz Birdsworth (Celia Ireland) has some big life changes ahead of her and is set to be paroled, but without having any contact with her family for seven years, what does life on the outside look like for her? It's a scary world that has changed a lot since her incarceration and she'll face many dangers, some inadvertently from those she calls friends.
Sue "Boomer" Jenkins (Katrina Milosevic) is still Franky's main hench, but she has her share of ups and downs this season, a big one being problems with her boyfriend on the outside, and another being a serious extension to her sentence when she takes the fall for something and blames another prisoner for it. She plots revenge and we have yet to see the full fallout from this.
Finally, Simone "Simmo" Slater (Alexandra Fowler) returns to Wentworth and Franky is worried that Jacs' number two could spell trouble for her. Well, she's right since Simmo is backed by the remaining Holt family members, but what does her return mean for the prison dynamic? Nothing good, that's for sure...
Overall, Wentworth: Season 2 is fantastic. The addition of Governor Ferguson as a micro-managing control freak who manipulates everyone to her own end and has an evil grand plan that even the audience isn't completely privy to was a brilliant addition to the cast. She has the Nurse Rachett routine down to a wicked art and is a joy (and simultaneous horror) to watch. Best of all is seeing Bea's metamorphosis this season as she goes from an emotional blob to a calculating kingpin in a matter of months. Interestingly enough, this season, there's also been the addition of a song playing during the last few moments of each episode and let's just say this - the season finale should have been Drowning Pool's "Let the Bodies Hit the Floor." #beaisatotalbadass
If you thought Wentworth: Season 1 was just okay, watch Wentworth: Season 2 and you'll be sold. It is intense, incredible, and packs a real punch. While it doesn't have the humor that Orange is the New Black offers, there are more moments of levity this season than last, but it is still incredibly dark. The special features include cast and crew interviews, a photo gallery, a guided tour of Wentworth by Celia Ireland/Liz Birdsworth and a quick featurette on Publicity Day which is basically where they shoot all of the pack shots and such. All are interesting, but the real meat is in the show itself, which will keep you glued to the screen from start to finish. Highly recommended.